Stray dog tugs at heart strings

BURLINGTON Animal control officials say the dog named "Freeway" may have to be put down, but there's a campaign to instead send Freeway to a good home.

Freeway was a stray that lived for months near Exit 154 along Interstate 85/40 in Mebane. He was friendly, but extremely shy, and attempts to catch him didn't work for weeks.

Bruce Raskin is just one of many residents who say they befriended the dog and fed him meals.

"We called him Romeo," said Raskin.

Raskin eventually managed to catch him in his backyard, and got bitten on the hand in the process.

"Well, the dog was really stressed out and I don't think he's got aggressive tendencies," Raskin explained.

But because he bit someone, Burlington Police have him in quarantine. They're also hesitant to allow him to be put up for adoption.

"In a lot cases like this, if you have an unknown animal with an unknown vaccination history that has bit somebody, it's a danger to put him back out into the population and to adopt out to somebody cause there's a possibility he could do it again," explained Asst. Chief Greg Seel.

Now, Freeway's advocates are pleading with the animal shelter to put him up for adoption. Police say they hope they'll come forward to adopt the dozens of others in desperate need of a home.

"There's a lot of animals in that shelter that could be adopted right now, but the focus has turned on this one," Seel commented.

As for what will happen to Freeway, he's under state-mandated quarantine until Monday. Officials could decide what to do with him as early as next week.

"We're going to take a look at what all the options are for this animal and find out what's best for the animal and the community," said Seel.

Copyright © 2023 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.